Over 50% Australians expected to be using shared economy platforms by year's end

New research by start-up accelerator The Sharing Hub has asserted that an increasing number of Australians are turning to the sharing economy to bridge the pay gap.

Their latest report indicates that seven million Australians have used the sharing economy to make and save money. That figure is anticipated to rise throughout the year, with more than half the population expected to have used it to improve their finances by the end of 2018.

Whether it’s sharing a ride, caravan, space or even pets, the success of the sharing economy is down to the technology that enables it. Suppliers can make money by offering a service or sharing an asset, while on the flip side, customers can reap the benefits of a more affordable and convenient service.

The Sharing Hub say that 1 in 10 Australians are significantly boosting their income by becoming a supplier in the shared economy, one average working just five hours a week and boosting they income by $1,100 a month.

Unsurprisingly, Airbnb and Uber topped out as the most universally recognised sharing economy brands. However, the report found that Australia has its own successful homegrown platforms that are helping to drive the so-called gig economy, which The Sharing Hub say is worth $2.6 billion in revenue in NSW alone. Australia’s most popular sharing economy platforms include Airtasker, Mad Paws, Zoom2u, Spacer, Openshed and Camplify.

The report says that almost half of all Australians are also using the sharing economy several times a month as customers, with affordability cited as the number one reason, and just under a quarter believing they receive a better service. 1 in 3 Australians also thing the government should be helping build more awareness about how the sharing economy can help make Australia more sustainable and bring the community together.

“It’s great to see that so many Australians are caring about sharing, and realising that the sharing economy can easily help boost their income,” said Mike Rosenbaum, Co-Founder of the Sharing Hub.

“You don’t need to be business savvy; these platforms give you a marketplace so that you can work for yourself with flexible working hours. Over the next decade we expect most Australians will choose sharing over owning, becoming better connected with the community in the process.”

On the other side of the fence, concerns have been recently raised by unions and economists about the potential negative impact the shared and gig economy can have towards the wages and conditions for Australian workers.

For example, Unions NSW called for a greater regulation of the gig economy after a number of asbestos-removal jobs were posted on Airtasker earlier this month.

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